The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon
CASTLE COURT, 2 CASTLEGATE WAY, DUDLEY, DY1 4RH, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 01384 216840
Fax:
Fax 01384 216841
DX:
12746 DUDLEY
Email:
Web:
www.hawkinshatton.co.uk

Colin Rodrigues, Managing partner

Managing partner Colin Rodrigues explains how Hawkins Hatton is adapting to clients' changing needs.

1. What do you see as the main points that differentiate Hawkins Hatton from your competitors

Every firm talks about service and cost effectiveness. However, the proof of the pudding is always in the eating. Being a niche corporate practice allows HH to focus on SME clients only. SME Entrepreneurs are driven individuals who demand quality of service at all times, but as part of this they expect that service to be in a wrapper made up of commerciality and not a thin veneer of legal opinion without guidance.

2. Which practices do you see growing in the next 12 months?

I see a lot of practices from London looking to establish a base outside London in order to leverage off the lower cost. What are the drivers behind that? The quality of clients.

3. What's the main change you've made in the firm that will benefit clients?

Being a niche practice, we constantly evolve. As part of this evolution, we have always copied clients and their advisors into all emails, but now advice on transactional documents is presented in the format of a table which specifically allow clients to insert instructions and/or comments with regard to particular aspects of documents we produce for review by them. This innovative approach allows clients to scan risk areas and report back to us without having to worry about cumbersome reports.

4. Is technology changing the way you interact with your clients, and the services you can provide them?

Technology has always been a driver for our business, and being a niche practice, we have always leveraged off technology and we were one of the first to promote the use of electronic data rooms to share information rather than simply rely on email.

5. Can you give us a practical example of how you have helped a client to add value to their business?

A current client of HH who sold 20% of his business for ÂŁ12m found the underwriter who bought into that business now no longer wants to provide underwriting facilities to the client. The underwriters are based in America and as part of this negotiation; we coordinated and prepared agendas for our client. We rehearsed calls with our client and their advisors so they were better able to present a way forward as part of the negotiation process. Notwithstanding there were CF advisors on board, we found an inventive solution to allow the client to standstill with the underwriter for a 6-month period, in order to allow them to work out the funding arrangements to buy out their underwriter/investor.

6. Are clients looking for stability and strategic direction from their law firms – where do you see the firm in three years’ time?

Without a doubt. Anybody can provide legal solutions; however the key is to ensure that the legal solution has been commercially thought through and presented in a way which allows the maximum chance for it to succeed.

I expect the firm will continue to provide the quality of service which has distinguished it from its competitors since its inception in 2005 however it will do so in wider legal markets including London. The firm already has a national client base and it is now focused on broadening that client base by launching an office in London in 2019.

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Gulbenkian Andonain discuss NEW Tier 1 Start-Up Visa and the NEW Tier 1 Innovator Visa

    The document entitled "Statement of Changes to Immigration Rules" which was released by the House of Commons on the 7th March 2019, outlined and advised us on a number of changes that will come into place that will affect the Tier 1 Investor Visa amongst other visa programmes and schemes. The latest article on our website discusses both of these new UK business visa routes. Our immigration lawyers London are already up to date on all of the required information for both the NEW Tier 1 Start-Up Visa and the NEW Tier 1 Innovator Visa .
  • Upcoming Changes to the UK Tier 1 Investor Visa

    According to the new document from the House of Commons on March 7th 2019 titled “Statement of Changes to Immigration Rules”, a number of changes will come into place that affecting the Tier 1 UK Investor Visa programme amongst other visa programmes and schemes. Read about them in our latest  article . 
  • Brexit and non-EU Immigration

    There is no doubt that the UK has to date benefited immensely from visa-free EU immigration to the extent that visa conditions and caps on non-EU migrant have undermined and overshadowed the ability of this group to play a prominent role in British industry and commerce and in its expanding and overburdened NHS service. It is the view of  Gulbenkian Andonian  however, that after  Brexit, there should be a noticeable change in those skilled non-EU migrants contributing to British society in a meaningful way. 
  • Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors discuss Post Brexit scenarios - EU Nationals and Salient Immigration

    From 1 January 2021 everyone except for British and Irish citizens will be subject to immigration control in the UK.   Gulbenkian Andonian solicitors has already published an article on this topic of post- Brexit immigration and has discussed the case of EU nationals and family members after Brexit, you can find that article here as one of many in our blog .
  • DEFERRED PROSECUTION AGREEMENTS: THE BEST OPTION? OR A FLAWED IDEA?

    Tescoadmitted wrongdoing over its accounting scandal in order to obtain a deferredprosecution agreement and avoid a conviction. But with everyone charged overthe scandal having been cleared, Aziz Rahman examines whether the deferredprosecution agreement process needs revising.
  • DEFERRED PROSECUTION AGREEMENTS: OBTAINING ONE AND SEEING IT THROUGH TO COMPLETION

    With Standard Bank having become the first organisation to conclude a DPA, Aziz Rahman explains why gaining one is only the start of the challenge.
  • DISMISSAL AT NISSAN AND WORKPLACE CRIME PREVENTION

    The sacking of Nissan’s high-profile chairman may have beenproof that nobody is infallible. But Nicola Sharp argues that it should also beseen as an indicator that no company can be considered safe from wrongdoing.
  • Applying for A Sole Representative Visa

    Regardless of the Brexit outcome, the United Kingdom will remain one of the world most powerful economies. With a market of 65 million people and close ties with Europe, many overseas-based organisations look to establishing a subsidiary or branch office in Britain.
  • BRIBERY ALLEGATIONS IN MORE THAN ONE JURISDICTION: THE IMPORTANCE OF ENSURING A JOINED-UP DEFENCE AP

    Aziz Rahman considers the Ericsson bribery investigation and outlines how best to respond if you are investigated by more than one law enforcement agency
  • Have Changes to The Spouse/Civil Partnership Minimum Income Threshold Made A Difference?

    The plight of those denied a UK Spouse/CivilPartnership Visa or a Spouse/Civil Partnership Visa extension continues to feature in the headlines.   In August 2018, the Guardian reported on one young woman, driven to attempt suicide after her fiancé, an Albanian national, was not permitted to enter the country.   The Home Office ruled Paige Smith, a British Citizen, did not meet the £18,600 income threshold.   It later transpired the Home Office lost a crucial payslip proving that Ms Smith met the criteria, a document the department had been sent four times by a Solicitor and Ms Smith’s MP.   The appeal Judge took ten minutes to rule the Visa should have been approved; however, the couple still had to wait two months for the Home Office to declare it would not appeal the decision.